Thursday, April 30, 2009

I swear I shouldn't be allowed out

I went to BigBox housewares store today.  I dutifully packed my coupons, and did laps, selecting the pillow I wanted for Chez Goddess.  It was downfilled and lovely.

While I was there,  I remembered to look for a garlic press.  I was so NOT thrilled with the selection.  I was button-holed by a micro-plane fanatic, who swore up and down that it was great for garlic.  What the hell, I could see the applications.  I bought one.

I was just putting it at the sink to be washed, and I whipped off the sleeve and touched the blade.  It reminded me of something.  What could it be?

Oh, yeah.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Oh, dammit, I started the wrong project..

I am a little aggravated with myself.  As you know, last week, I cast on this top.  As it turns out, I think this orange one was the one I was looking for....I just KNEW there was a top in my pattern folder, and I grabbed the wrong one.  Silly me.  I have the back done, and I am not ripping out.  With the multi-colored yarn, its probably better I made the mistake.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Swine Flu and Mother's Day

The swine flu uproar started yesterday.  Yesterday was the day I went to church with DH, and came home with a bad sore throat.
This made me think about my DMIL, who is, VERY active in her church.  She just got over a bad cold.  Hmmmm.

Today I got on the phone and double checked with her.... and for Mother's Day, she is getting a big bouquet of these:

She can pick the ones she wants and take the rest to the church.  And we can hope nice soap encourages more people to wash their hands a little bit longer.  And hopefully everyone can stay healthier.

Seriously.  I sent 20 bottles.

Friday, April 24, 2009

I don't have any yarn....

How the hell is that possible?

Commission knitting is a little tricky-you have no decisions to make.  When you are finished, you feel like you've been let out of school for the summer.  The knitting possibilities are endless.  It's time to look at every single magazine and consider all those ideas you ignored while you were plugging away.  I have to match up yarns and patterns.  It's kinda like staring into the cupboard at 5:30 wondering "What am I going to make for dinner?"

Something happened this time around.  This spring, plain yarns are everywhere.  Everything I like calls for plain sportweight cotton.
I don't have any.  

How is that even possible?

So anyhow, after a lot of stash-diving, I found a kind of cottony, kind of metallic blend.  And this pattern:

I've already started messing with it-I added ribbing and waist shaping.  Ahhhhh, the freedom of alterations!


Hot Cocoa, anyone?

I ordered roses a month ago, and planted them as soon as they got in.  My plan was to place a Hot Cocoa rose next to a plumbago, so I could put orange smack dab against blue.  (I wanted to frighten the neighbrs!)  Both plants are sooo little, they've got a lot of growing to do, but this is where I am going.

(Marie, see my weeds?)

On the knitting front, now that I've been liberated from task knitting, I've been playing and swatching.  I cast on for a cabled jumper that I saw in Sandra earlier this year-I love the pattern, but the merino with a metallic filament was just going to give me PITA cable crossing every row, so I frogged that little bit and moved on.  I got my new IWK in yesterday, so I browsed thru it and the new Vogue.  I think I have my next victim.  It's pretty mindless knitting, but maybe it's time for me to do some slackjawed stitching.  I'll know in a day or two.....

Thursday, April 23, 2009


I bought 'Knit One Below" right before Christmas, but haven't really had a chance to play with the brioche rib stitch.  I was very happy-skippy in my newfound state of liberation yesterday, went into LYS and was surprised to see the Alchemy yarns trunk show.  

This is my LYS's display garment.  It uses that brioche rib, and when I saw it, I was a goner.  I bought the book straight off.   I was smitten with the project.   I shuffled and hemmed and hawed, then finally bought the Migrations (the self striping yarn used), and told myself to stop cheaping myself out, and just buy two skeins at 16.00 each.  There really isn't a sub.

I had to draw the line at the Sanctuary, the light grey solid teamed with it.  That is 28.00 per skein.  Times four.  Yipe.  I KNOW I have SOMETHiNG in the stash that I can use, and not spend the 112.00.  

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Wriggling my toes

Since the beginning of the year, I have had two "knitting that must not be named" projects.  And both are done.


12 x 109 yards=1308.  Photos to follow when appropriate!

Now I can knit for fun!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Spring-a-ling

Remember my experiment in lateral growth and rose redirection? New (maroon) growth tells me it worked!

Bottle Brush-it's a cool looking plant!

Monday, April 20, 2009


Is the amount the national debt clock has risen since January 21st of this year.  That's amazing.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

In fairness, not all reunions suck-

Me, Coleen, Dawn, Dave and Sandy-a raucous and hilarious reunion courtesy of Facebook-I laughed my butt off and I wasn't even drinking.   I slept with every single person in this picture-no, REALLY slept-on convoys, on rack, after we set up tents, during commander's call.  I was stationed in Germany with all these people between 1987-1991.  If you were a jerk then, we remembered you, and not fondly!

ETA:  Hey, here's a link for a free sweater pattern-and some of them are pretty cute!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Those times when life turns on a dime-

When I was 12, my world was turned upside down.  My grandfather died, my father was devastated, and we moved from our suburban Chicago home, drove across country, and into a duplex just northeast of Boulder.  

I know that the move was pivotal-things that already were dysfunctional did not get any more fun OR functional.  The stars aligned with XYZ, and we all went spinning down that giant waterslide called fate.  I oftened wondered what would have happened had things gone differently.   What would have happened had we stayed in Treeton?

If you look on a map of the Chicagoland area, you won't find a Treeton (any more than you will find an East Cupcake Texas).  But you know the place.  It's that place stuck in 1972, where there is a country club, an enormous public pool (possibly the town's best feature) and the junior high principal measures to see if your skirt is long enough.  As I look back, I think about how some of my friends' parents had thick European accents, and wonder if they arrived before the war.  My dad used to say, in a snotty-sarcastic voice "How lucky we are to live in Treeton."  Sometimes he said it to be sarcastic, other days, he said it because he wanted to believe it.

I got sucked into the vortex called Facebook recently, and found one of my best friends from grade school.  I was excited.  We got on the phone and yakked away, discussing 30+ years of water under the bridge, over the road, and in the gutter.  

She told me about exotic trips, misfortunes of youth, and the love of her life.  I asked her about her older sister (who currently lives just northeast of Boulder).  "She is happy."  "What does she do?"  "She doesn't make any money."  "????"

A few weeks later, she dropped me a line "We're kind of busy, because my parents are coming in tomorrow."  "Hey, send my warm regards to your mother."  And she said "I'll let her know that we're in touch. I seem to recall that my folks thought you were a little wild, but they let us play together a lot and we had over nights."

What?  She hadn't seen me since Nixon was President, and I was in grade school.  She didn't just write that in an email, she left that on my wall, like ugly bathroom graffitti for everyone to read.  I couldn't decided whether to be hurt or mad.  I thought about her telling me about how judgemental her dad was, and thinking, "The apple didn't fall to far from THAT tree."  I thought about how I didn't know whether she lived or not until the end of January, so why should I give a shit about what came out of her mouth?  I thought about how sometimes, I am an asshole without meaning to be.  

Mostly, tho, I hear my dad's mocking voice in the back of my mind and now I understand what he meant.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Easy as 1, 2, 3!

Heathermoine had a terrific hat on Rav.  When I asked her about it, she directed me to this page.
Once I took a look a her instructions, and compared them to the photo, it was no problem.

1) Provisional cast on (45 for small kid size), knit two rows.
2) Slip first stitch in every row, and work in pattern: 
          4 rows stockinette, and 4 rows reverse stockinette.
Row 1-slip 1st stitch, kfb of next stitch, work to last 3 stitches.  Work 2 stitches tog, knit.
Row 2-work in pattern.
I used a 3 needle bind off to join the side seams and top.

Yarn: Adriafil Knitcol, 1 ball, size 7 needles.  100 yards to total

Monday, April 13, 2009

Naah naah naan

I expected naan to be tricky and difficult....but no, it puffed up just like a pita or tortilla.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Don't fear the banana sauce....

A few weeks ago, I was at the store with my niece, and spied this bottle on the shelf.  It was about .99, so I thought "what the hell" and bought it.

That evening, I cracked the bottle.  "Oh!  Is that it?" I said, and passed the bottle around.  Everyone took a taste.  We were all really amused that something so weird and exotic tasted like ketchup, with a touch of barbecue sauce.  

On the way home fro
m Mass today, DH was tortured by the scent of everyone else's barbecue.  He ran to the store and picked up some chicken.  I mixed seasoning salt and sea salt together, and tucked it up under the skin, and chilled it for two hours.  DH fired up the charcoal, and right before the bird crowed, we slapped on a little banana sauce with a 
tablespoon of Goya orange marinade (but cider vinegar would work as well)  mixed in for spreadability. 

The result?  It was good.  A little smoke, juicy chicken, and tangy sauce.  

I was surprised that my 100% natural chicken was augmented by broth.  Sneaky bastards.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 10, 2009

I lost a comment-

Seriously-I was at Marcias, typed away furiously, hit post...then realized "that wasn't Marcia's blog."  Doh!

If you have an inappropriate post about the Korean makeup and Goya marinade, it's mine.  Just delete it.

Good Friday

Wow!  It's been a week!

On the knitting & crocheting front, things are moving forward!

On the gardening front, look!!!  I have tomatoes!  (Please God, we need a few good rains!)

On the personal front, I put together my little brother's birthday box this week.  I included a copy of Paul McKenna's "I can make you thin".  I bought one for myself.  The jury is still out, but let's just say-it has potential.

On the career front, have you ever heard of people who make their own luck?  People who were able to seize an opportunity and turn it into something big?  I always wanted to be one of those people .... but I didn't know how.  Yesterday, I spied a little thread, a teensy tag end hanging out of a conversation I had with an aquaintance.  I grabbed it and yanked; I was up til midnight putting together a resume.

Let's see what happens!

Saturday, April 04, 2009

beginner's woes

I sat down with a crochet hook last night.  

It was harder than I imagined it would be.  

I had no idea what size crochet hook I needed.  So I picked two to try.  I had two different fiber blends-100% cotton or a cotton rayon mix?  I chained.  I counted.  I swore.  I found the 100% cotton on a larger hook made a fabric I could work.  The rayon is a little soft for me to handle just yet.  Maybe later.  

I put it away.  I tried a less favored color and a motif in one of my books.  Then I chained my requisite 109 stitches, and tried again.  I was glad I accidentally bought a Japanese "how to crochet" book, because each stitch's symbol is shown next to a good graphic demonstrating how to execute it.  I have no idea whether I am working a half double crochet-in my mind it is "looks like the Easter Seal emblem."  Doesn't matter what it's called, does it?

This is not easy for me.  I am a competent knitter.  I am only a mid-level beginning crocheter.  But damn, I have high expectations from my knitting!  It's slow going.  I found mistakes in the short amount I have done.  I have a miscount.  If I yank back to it, I think it might help the color pooling I have on one least I'd like it to.

Don't think I haven't considered just knitting the damned thing in Bear's Paw.

Friday, April 03, 2009

The C Word.

Lately, I've thought alot about the C word.


I know. I taught myself to knit in 1984 because I didn't like crochet patterns. Coming off of one long era of granny squares and ripple afghans, knitting made cute clothes.  

Although I can crochet, nowadays I rarely do.  It's hard on my hands.

So what changed? This book. I found it in the sale bin in Singapore.   I saw it and I was totally smitten. Hands down, no questions asked, smitten.

I am a little worried. I am really crochet rusty, I don't read Japanese, and I have never crocheted from a chart. First time up at bat in 25 years, and it's not pretty. But I am filled with a garment lust that rivals my lust for the Noro cape....

And what would I make it with? I thought about Cotton Joy. I have enough, but the construct is something like embroidery floss. I can knit it without much trouble, but I am not a crochet expert.

Recently, Elann had two suitable cottons-Frutta Mix (right) and Cotton Joy Jr.  I started to swatch the Frutta, and found it was a little thready.  My Cotton Joy Jr. came in at noon, and I will be test driving it to see how it behaves.  It seems to be a little more 'together' than Cotton Joy, a little more substantial.  That bundle at the back?  Boy, is IT orange.  Maybe I need to make my DMIL a garment with that.

We'll see.